Ask anyone walking through the athletic building where the Strength and Conditioning room is and you might get a puzzled look, but ask where the “Work Room” is, and you are sure to get an answer.
The Work Room, as Haverford’s weight and fitness center is popularly known, gets its name from the idea that it is here, in a room tucked into the back of the athletic building, that the work gets done. The Work Room is where middle school physical education teacher and Head Strength and Conditioning Coach Matthew Rosko leads seasonal strength training workouts, open to all upper school students.
Third, Fourth, and Fifth Formers are currently required to earn two sports-activity credits. Currently, Coach Rosko’s Work Room program does not count as a sports activity credit.
That policy needs to change.
According to the Department of Athletics’ Parent and Student Handbook, “Athletics are a vital part of the total curriculum of The Haverford School… boys are encouraged to vary their athletic experiences to enhance diversity in learning.”
Many students, including myself, use the Work Room workouts in our off-season to build strength and maintain conditioning. Participating in the Work Room program adds diversity to my athletic experience.
There are many benefits to regular weight training. Studies by Harvard Health show that people who work out have improved mood and mental functioning, two factors that can help students in rigorous academic environments. Sports such as soccer and cross country require about two hours of daily practice after school, and Coach Rosko’s workouts require the same time commitment. If students doing Coach Rosko’s workouts spend the same amount of time as other students playing sports, why don’t students working with Coach Rosko get credit?
Lifting with Coach Rosko should be a sports credit because students spend just as much time after school as in a traditional sport. If the Work Room program counted as a sports credit, more of the student body would attend, which would lead to a happier and healthier community.